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Panek [Panic][1] was a child of Shadow.[2] He had been a Malazan child crucified together with 1,300 other children by the followers of the Whirlwind Rebellion under Korbolo Dom's command before joining Shadow.[3]

Kalam Mekhar thought him a boy of twelve or thirteen while the nine or ten-year-old Nil thought they were of the same age.[4][5]

Panek had a single, large, glistening, segmented eye and retractable, dagger-like fangs as long as a toddler's fingers.[6][7] He spoke with a rasping voice.[8]

In Deadhouse GatesEdit

Panek and the other crucified children were rescued by the demon Apt who convinced Shadowthrone to heal them and bring them to safety within the Realm of Shadow. Apt claimed guardianship of Panek and asked that he be force-healed. Shadowthrone did so, but warned that such healing demanded a price, and the effects on the boy's mind would make him unpredictable. In the process of restoring his health, Shadowthrone shaped the boy's eyeless sockets into one eye matching Apt's.[9] Afterwards, she and the boy traveled together with the boy clinging to her back and addressing the demon as "mother".[10]

Panek's unusual state gave him a sense of sight within Shadow much like the Hounds of Shadow and beyond even Cotillion's own. Introducing himself as Uncle Cotillion, the assassin expressed regret that the boy remembered his crucifixion and assured him that the punishment had not been the boy's fault. He was stunned to discover that the boy was able to see walls, trees, and other parts of the old places of the Shadow Hold that he could not, and asked the boy to teach him what he saw. As Cotillion departed and faded into the dark, Panek asked his mother, "Does he imagine that he now walks unseen?"[11]

The boy clung to Apt's back as she fought many foes, including the Semk godling, Pearl and his Kenryll'ah demon, and Hands of the Claw.[12][13][14]

In House of ChainsEdit

Apt demon of shadow by merlkir

Interpretation of Apt and Panek by Merlkir

Panek and the other rescued Malazan orphans were trained by Minala and Apt to become the Company of Shadow. He, Minala, and the Company were sent to guard the First Throne together with Apt, where they were later joined by Onrack, Trull Sengar, Monok Ochem, and Ibra Gholan who were also intent on protecting the Throne. The T'lan Imass believed The Unbound and the Tiste Edur planned to seize the Throne and control the T'lan Imass for their master, the Crippled God.[15][16]

Panek wore black leather armour shaped like overlapping scales. His chest harness bore a dozen weapons including long-knives and throwing darts, and his belt sported two single-hand Crossbows.[7]

In The BonehuntersEdit

The defenders of the First Throne faced numerous assaults from the Crippled God's allies, the Tiste Edur, and of the half who survived many bore signs of the desperate fighting. When Cotillion visited, he noted Panek clinging to Apt's foot, his scalp poorly stitched where a blow had peeled it back from his entire forehead. Minala asked the god to take the children away while she, Apt, and Panek remained behind, but Cotillion said he could not take them where he was going. He promised to send Shadowthrone to provide healing. Panek told Uncle Cotillion he was confident the defenders could hold, but he missed Edgewalker and his stories of dragons. He shared Edgewalker's explanation for why there were so many prisoners in Shadow leaving the god stunned by the revelation.[17]

The other children of the Company of Shadow looked to Panek for leadership.[18] He sometimes took Ibra Gholan or Onrack's place guarding the natural choke point in the tunnel passage leading to the throne room.[19]

Eventually, the Tiste Edur attacked in force. The warlock, Sathbaro Rangar, opened a gate for two hundred Edur warriors and sixty Letherii archers led by Kholb Harat and Saur Bathrada. They were also accompanied by Ahlrada Ahn as well as the champion Icarium and his companion, Taralack Veed.[20] Monok Ochem veered into his Soletaken form to kill the warlock before Icarium became enraged by the sight of dead children and turned on friend and foe alike. Trull fought the Jhag to a standstill until Icarium shattered his spear. As Icarium pushed in for the kill, Apt swirled from the shadows and attacked, but was killed. Minala was struck by a spear in the chest and retreated to the throne room. Trull later observed Panek kneeling beside the prone and still form of his remaining "mother" as her blood slowly pooled beneath her. Cotillion and Shadowthrone arrived after the fight was over and Shadowthrone began the work of tending to the survivors.[21]

In Reaper's GaleEdit

Panek was 'retired' to the Shadow Realm along with Minala, Aystar, and the other - about twenty - surviving children 'soldiers' of the Company of Shadow.[22] Panek's fate thereafter is not known.

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. Ten Very Big Books podcast - Deadhouse Gates As pronounced by Steven Erikson at 45:53
  2. House of Chains, Dramatis Personae
  3. Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 11, US HC p.299-300
  4. Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 11, US HC p.299
  5. Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 13, US HC p.346
  6. Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 12, US HC p.341
  7. 7.0 7.1 House of Chains, Chapter 23, US SFBC p.748
  8. Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 23, US HC p.576
  9. Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 11, US HC p.304-305
  10. Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 20, US HC p.534
  11. Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 20, US HC p.534-536
  12. Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 12, US HC p.340-341
  13. Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 20, US HC p.539
  14. Deadhouse Gates, Chapter 23, US HC p.583
  15. House of Chains, Chapter 23, US TPB p.579-581
  16. House of Chains, Chapter 20, US SFBC p.657-658
  17. The Bonehunters, Chapter 17, US SFBC p.694/698-699
  18. The Bonehunters, Chapter 19, US SFBC p.753
  19. The Bonehunters, Chapter 17, US SFBC p.698
  20. The Bonehunters, Chapter 21, US SFBC p.813
  21. The Bonehunters, Chapter 21, US SFBC p.962-972/976-977
  22. Reaper's Gale, Chapter 8, US TPB p.188-189/192
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